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Order Food with Facebook

Facebook is an easy way to connect with friends, communicate with people (messenger), and even sell products (Facebook Marketplace).  Now, Facebook is getting into food delivery!

From Facebook – Today, we’re taking the time out of finding what you want to eat by officially launching the ability to order food for pick-up or delivery, directly on Facebook. People already go to Facebook to figure out what to eat by reading about nearby restaurants, and seeing what their friends say about them. So, we’re making it even easier.

Facebook has combined options from existing food ordering services such as –  EatStreet, Delivery.com, DoorDash, ChowNow and Olo, and even restaurants like Jack in the Box, Five Guys, Papa John’s, and – out favorite – Panera.  As a result, users won’t  have to search multiple places to find what they’re looking for.

The new Facebook service will connect users with old favorites and new discoveries all within the Facebook platform. Users can even consider how their friends review a restaurant before ordering food.

From Facebook – You can browse restaurants nearby by visiting the Order Food section in the Explore menu. On this page, you can browse food options and select Start Order when you’ve found what you’re looking for. If the restaurant you want to order from offers takeout or delivery with multiple services, you can select which service you’d like to use. For example, if you have an account with Delivery.com, you can easily order with your existing login. If you don’t have an account with that service, you can quickly and easily sign up, without leaving the Facebook app.

Initially, Facebook users will be able to browse restaurants near them that take orders via Delivery.com, DoorDash, ChowNow, Zuppler, EatStreet, Slice, and Olo, as well as directly from restaurants including Papa John’s, Wingstop, Panera, Jack in the Box, TGI Friday’s, Denny’s, El Pollo Loco, Chipotle, Five Guys and Jimmy John’s.

For further information on this new FB feature is accessible at:

https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2017/10/order_food/

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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Some Considerations on Apple’s Tax Payments

Apple’s tax practices are back in the news.  A recent study from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists says Apple found a new location to store its overseas cash to avoid paying higher taxes. The findings, part of a leak of documents called the “Paradise Papers,” state that Apple chose the tiny island of Jersey in the English Channel to store its over $250 billion in cash. The island charges no tax on companies’ profits, ICIJ reported.

Apple put out a press release to clarify it’s tax position.  Apple believes every company has a responsibility to pay its taxes, and as the largest taxpayer in the world, Apple pays every dollar it owes in every country around the world.

Apple also highlights certain inaccuracies in the reporting by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Among the inaccuracies in these reports:

1) The changes Apple made to its corporate structure in 2015 were specially designed to preserve its tax payments to the United States, not to reduce its taxes anywhere else. No operations or investments were moved from Ireland.

Far from being “untouched by the United States,” Apple pays billions of dollars in taxes to the US at the statutory 35 percent rate on investment income from its overseas cash.

2) Apple’s effective tax rate on foreign earnings is 21 percent — a figure easily calculated from public filings. This rate has been consistent for many years.

Apple further included some additional facts regarding their tax exposure:

1) Apple is the largest taxpayer in the world, paying over $35 billion in corporate income taxes in the last three years.

2) Apple’s worldwide effective tax rate is 24.6 percent, higher than average for US multinationals.

3) The vast majority of the value in Apple products is created in the United States, where design, development, engineering work and more are accomplished. So under the current international tax system, the majority of Apple taxes are owed to the US.

4) Apple has cash overseas because that’s where it sells the majority of its products.

 

Further details on Apple’s tax position is accessible at:

https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2017/11/the-facts-about-apple-tax-payments/

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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5 Tips For Protecting Your Uber Account

Uber is a pretty cool technology company.  Not only have they disrupted the way  we commute, they’ve impacted the way we eat (UberEats), and are even getting into the self driving cars in a BIG way.

That being said, it comes as no surprise that Uber recently provided security tips for users to protect their accounts with some useful tips.  The useful tips were released as part of October being Cybersecurity Awareness Month in many countries around the world. Uber’s security teams work around the clock to block suspicious activity on accounts, but they provided the following few simple tips to help protect you against scammers.

Top 5 security tips

1) Use a unique password for every online account. Don’t use your Uber password on any other website or service.  It may be hard to manage a bunch of different log-ins – but doing so, will definitely improve your security profile.

2) Don’t share your password or verification code with anyone. Uber will never ask you for this information.  Be cautious of weird or unusual emails requesting your password or verification info.

3) Only add debit or credit cards you own to your Uber account.  You may not get notices from credit card companies if there is suspicious activity on someone else’s card.

4) Scammers are clever and always trying to come up with new scams. Be cautious of phone calls, text messages, and emails from anyone claiming to be an Uber employee and offering a reward or prize. The FTC tracks these types of “impersonation scams” across many services..

5) If you notice any suspicious activity on your account, report it to Uber immediately in the mobile app or at help.uber.com. Uber takes these reports seriously and work with financial institutions and law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute scammers.

Using these tips will help protect your account.  For more tips, check out

https://www.uber.com/blog/5-tips-protecting-uber-account/

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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Uber’s Advanced Technology Group – is Hiring!

Ok – Uber always was a pretty cool company, but now – with their self driving car program – it’s become even more cool!

 

From Uber: If you’re driving around Pittsburgh in the coming weeks you might see a strange sight: a car that looks like it should be driven by a superhero. But this is no movie prop — it’s a test car from Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group (ATG) in Pittsburgh.

 

The car, a hybrid Ford Fusion, will be collecting mapping data as well as testing its self-driving capabilities. When it’s in self-driving mode, a trained driver will be in the driver’s seat monitoring operations. The Uber ATG car comes outfitted with a variety of sensors including radars, laser scanners, and high resolution cameras to map details of the environment.

 

Real-world testing is critical to our efforts to develop self-driving technology. Self-driving cars have the potential to save millions of lives and improve quality of life for people around the world. 1.3 million people die every year in car accidents — 94% of those accidents involve human error. In the future we believe this technology will mean less congestion, more affordable and accessible transportation, and far fewer lives lost in car accidents. These goals are at the heart of Uber’s mission to make transportation as reliable as running water — everywhere and for everyone.

 

Self driving cars may seem something like some Sci-Fi tech fantasy – but it’s here, and it looks like – it’s here to stay.  We think it would be fun to be part of the team that’s bringing tomorrow’s tech – to today’s reality.  Also, we’ve heard that Uber is a great company to work for – having great salary & benefits, perks, and growing at a huge pace.

 

Uber is actively recruiting for all various roles throughout their company – but we think working for their ATG group is extra special.  If you’re interested in learning more about available roles – check out:

https://www.uber.com/info/atg/car/

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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Hillary Clinton Roasts Herself on Late Night with Seth Meyers

Hillary Clinton has recently been hitting the media circuits promoting her new book What Happened?

Her book has been reviewed by several media outlets, and has gotten mainly positive reviews.  The book largely features her perspective of what happened leading up to the 2016 Presidential elections which resulted in her loss to Donald Trump.  It discusses – the email controversy, feminism, Donald Trump – and lots lots more.

We caught Mrs. Clinton’s visit to Late Night with Seth Meyers, and enjoyed her banter and comedic spirit.  The conversation with Meyers was covered by Vanity Fair, and below is an excerpt:

“According to a recent article, chardonnay is making a comeback,” Meyers said, providing the setup. The punchline? Clinton replying, “And they said I wouldn’t be able to create jobs.” Next up: “The retractable roof on Atlanta’s N.F.L. stadium is not working properly.” Clinton: “Oh, well at least that ceiling’s broken.” And, finally, “According to a recent report, koalas may be extinct by the year 2040.” Clinton: “And according to Fox News, that’s my fault.”

Meyers and Clinton then sat down for a more serious chat. Although late-night interviews are rarely hard-hitting, Clinton’s was well timed: her appearance marked the anniversary of the 2016 presidential election, an upset she’s wrote about at length in her book What Happened. On a lighter note, her appearance also came just one day after Democrats swept the 2017 local elections.

Asked what the recent victories mean, Clinton said, “I think the fever is finally breaking. I think that Americans, as we saw last night, are saying, ‘You know what, we really like our health care. We don’t like hatred and bigotry, and we don’t want to get shot wherever we go in our country.’ So I think that there is a growing awareness that the only way to reverse this is actually to go out and vote—and vote for people who have your values.”

We recommend checking out the video of her visit with Late Night, accessible at: https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2017/11/hillary-clinton-seth-meyers-late-night-bill-clinton-conan-obrien

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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Lawsuit Update:  Apple vs. Samsung

Apple and Samsung have been staunch competitors in the mobile device market for years.  Thus, it should come as no surprise they’ve ended up in court – on more than one occasion – and in more than one country.

Samsung has been vigorously fighting against Apple’s victory in a key smartphone patent lawsuit, but it seems as though they’re finally out of options and will have to pay Apple damages.

The US Supreme Court refused to hear Samsung’s appeal in the case, upholding a lower court’s decision reinstating a $120 million penalty for allegedly infringing on Apple’s patents for technology like slide-to-unlock and autocorrecting text. Samsung had argued that the lower court didn’t consider additional legal material, and supposedly changed laws for both issuing injunctions and invalidating patents.  It’s not uncommon for the Supreme Court to refuse to hear a case.  They usually do this if they believe the lower court’s decision was legally correct – and there is no basis for appeal.

Engadget recently asked Samsung for its response to the Supreme Court refusal to hear the appeal. At first glance, though, this is the end of this particular case since Samsung cannot turn to any other courts for appeal.

The amount Samsung is to pay Apple is $120 million.  This amount is rather small, when looking at gross revenue and profits of these massive corporations.  Samsung had a $12.91 billion profit last quarter. However, it’s kinda a big victory – for Apple – in principle. These companies have been litigating phone patent lawsuits for years…and it looks like Apple won.

From Engadget: Update: Samsung has provided a statement, and it’s unsurprisingly frustrated that the Supreme Court wouldn’t hear its case. It portrays this as a loss for customers and innovation, which is slightly ironic given that even Apple has moved away from slide-to-unlock with the iPhone X. You can read the full statement below.

“Our argument was supported by many who believed that the Court should hear the case to reinstate fair standards that promote innovation and prevent abuse of the patent system. One of Apple’s patents at issue in this case has been invalidated by courts around the world, and yet today’s decision allows Apple to unjustly profit from this patent, stunts innovation and places competition in the courtroom rather than the marketplace.”

Patent litigation is an expensive proposition, but it’s routine for tech companies in a competitive space – such as mobile smart phones.  I m sure this wont be the last lawsuit between Apple and Samsung – but for now, it seems as though Apple is the victor.

For further information – check out:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/11/06/samsung-denied-supreme-court-appeal-in-apple-lawsuit/

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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Lawsuit Update: Google vs Uber

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Federal Lawsuit Around Hillary Clinton Email Controversy Tossed Out 

In March 2015, it became publicly known that Hillary Clinton, during her tenure as United States Secretary of State, had used her family’s private email server for official communications, rather than official State Department email accounts maintained on federal secure servers. Those official communications included over 100 emails which contained classified information at the time they were sent, as well as nearly 2,100 emails which were not marked classified but would retroactively be ranked as classified by the State Department.

The controversy unfolded against the backdrop of Clinton’s 2016 presidential election campaign and hearings held by the United States House Select Committee on Benghazi. Some experts, officials, and members of Congress have contended that her use of private messaging system software and a private server violated State Department protocols and procedures, as well as federal laws and regulations governing recordkeeping. In response, Clinton has said that her use of personal email was in compliance with federal laws and State Department regulations, and that former secretaries of state had also maintained personal email accounts, though not their own private email servers.

After allegations were raised that some of the emails in question contained classified information, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) initiated an investigation regarding the origin and handling of classified emails on Clinton’s server. The FBI report found that some of the emails originated in five other intelligence agencies. The FBI found that all classified emails on Clinton’s server were stored and sent from “unclassified systems”, violating the same policies as those on Clinton’s personal server.

Several lawsuits were filed in connection with the email controversy.  Most recently, as noted by the Washington Post, a federal judge tossed a lawsuit Thursday that would have pushed the State Department and FBI to do more to try to track down Hillary Clinton’s emails, ruling the government has done all it reasonably could to locate the former secretary of state’s messages.

Two watchdog groups, Judicial Watch and Cause of Action, had sued in 2015 demanding the government recover all of Mrs. Clinton’s emails, saying she violated open-records laws by not preserving her messages.

U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg, though, said the FBI did what it could, and did manage to recover thousands of messages Mrs. Clinton didn’t return herself.

“Those efforts went well beyond the mine-run search for missing federal records … and were largely successful, save for some emails sent during a two-month stretch. Even then, the FBI pursued every imaginable avenue to recover the missing emails,” wrote Judge Boasberg, an Obama appointee to the court.

Originally, the case had been dismissed as moot, but last year the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia reversed that finding, ordering the government to “shake loose a few more emails.” But Judge Boasberg put an end to the shaking Thursday.

“The Court of Appeals may have asked the Government to ‘shak[e] the tree harder’ for more emails, but it never suggested that the FBI must shake every tree in every forest, without knowing whether they are fruit trees,” he wrote.

The judge said the FBI had already uncovered 55,000 pages of emails when it was ordered to do more. The agency interviewed people that most frequently exchanged work related emails with Mrs. Clinton, contacted her four service providers, and reviewed two phones and three iPads, which yielded little records.

Further details on the lawsuit are accessible at: https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/nov/9/federal-judge-fbi-exhausted-search-clinton-emails/

 

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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President Trump Expected To Nominate Rohit Chopra to FTC

President Donald Trump is expected to nominate Rohit Chopra to be an FTC commissioner, the White House recently announced.

The agency is currently headed by Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen, a Republican, with Democrat Terrell McSweeny the only other commissioner. The president has long been expected to name a permanent chair and fill the three empty commission seats, two Republican and one Democrat or independent.

The FTC works with the Justice Department to enforce antitrust law and pursues companies accused of deceptive advertising. It is an independent agency that is headed by a chairman and four commissioners. No more than three commissioners can come from any one party.

We think Rohit Chopra is a good choice.  Rohit Chopra is a Senior Fellow at the Consumer Federation of America. He is widely recognized for his expertise in consumer financial services and economic issues facing young people.

He was previously Assistant Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, where he oversaw the agency’s agenda on students and young consumers. He was also appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury as the agency’s first Student Loan Ombudsman, a new position created in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

During his tenure, the agency led enforcement actions that secured hundreds of millions of dollars of relief for student loan borrowers, published widely-cited research on the student loan market, and established a state-of-the-art student loan complaint system. He later joined the U.S. Department of Education as Special Adviser to the Secretary.

Chopra has frequently testified before Congress. His work has been profiled by The Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger’s, and Money and he is the recipient of multiple awards for his public service and contributions to the field of consumer finance.

He holds a BA from Harvard College and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Expertise: consumer finance and capital markets, banking regulation, financial technology, young consumers, financial services issues faced by servicemembers and veterans, financial services issues in higher education

Further details on the expected nomination are accessible at: http://nypost.com/2017/10/18/trump-selects-antitrust-lawyer-to-head-ftc/

 

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.

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New York Vs Chicago – The Pizza Wars

New Yorkers are passionate about a lot of things.  But few things stir up more passion and debate than Pizza – and especially which pizza is better – New York vs. Chicago.

This debate was renewed this week – when Mayor Bill de Blasio’s press secretary tweeted that a Chicago pizzeria was better than anything in New York.  The pizzeria being referenced was Pequods Pizza, which is known for it’s deep dish pizza.

The fundamental difference between New York and Chicago pizza is – size.  Chicago pizza is known for being deep dish.  Deep dish pizza is prepared in a – well, deep dish.  The depth of the pan – allows for piling on layer after layer of toppings, cheese, and sauce.  Some New Yorkers don’t even consider this being pizza – and refer to it being more of a casserole.  Other well known Chicago pizzerias include Gino’s East, Lou Malnatis, Giordanos, and The Art of Pizza.

Alternatively, New York pizza is a bit more traditional – and is made with a characteristically large hand-tossed thin crust, often sold in wide slices to go. The crust is thick and crisp only along its edge, yet soft, thin and pliable enough beneath its toppings to be folded in half to eat.

While the styles of pizza between the cities are vastly different – one commonality is that both, Chicagoans and New Yorkers – take their pizza seriously, very seriously.

Being a New Yorker – but having spent lots of time in Chicago – I feel i m well versed in both pizza styles.  That being said, if I had to judge – I m partial to New York style pizza.  It really doesn’t get better than grabbing a slice, and folding it half – before indulging.  Personally, i m not a fan of the the layered deep dish Chicago pizza – it’s really bogged down with cheese and sauce – and it’s hard to discern the flavor of the pizza.

Some noteworthy NYC pizza spots:

Lombardi’s

John’s (West Village)

Patsy’s Pizza

Totonno’s

Happy Eating…!

 

The postings on this site are authored by Gaurav Mohindra, and do not represent the postings, strategies or opinions of my employer, or any other party.  References to other articles are linked to most posts, should any referenced article require a formal citation (Chicago Manual of Citation), please contact us.  All referenced trademarks are the property of those trademark owners.